ActionAid Association has launches “Campaign for Social Security and Livelihood” to make Government policies and schemes, especially the recently launched e-Shram portal effective. This campaign will spread in 67 districts of Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan and the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. The launch was announced at a virtual meeting which saw the participation of Shri Yogesh Kumar, Additional Commissioner MGNREGA, Government of Uttar Pradesh, and more than 300 people from 4 states and one union territory.
The purpose of the campaign is to make the workers of the unorganized sector aware about the schemes related to social security and employment and to register in the ‘e Shram’ portal started by the Central Government. Through the campaign, information on important issues like MNREGA, minimum wages, housing, land and social security of the unorganized sector workers will be shared.
According to the survey conducted by the National Statistical Office (NSSO) in 2017-18, about 38 crore workers are employed in the unorganized sector in the country. The employment of laborers working in the unorganized sector is irregular. This increases their precarity and vulnerability in the face of natural disaster. In many areas, the income of workers is much less than the prescribed minimum wage. Most of these unorganized workers have no permanent source of employment and have to migrate for wages to different places away from their native places. Migrant workers are often deprived of the benefit of these welfare schemes of central and state governments like MNREGA, minimum wages, housing, health insurance and social security.
Tahira Hussain, social worker, while speaking in the meeting on issues faced by women labourers, said that there is a lack of basic facilities like toilets etc. at the work place for women, which directly affects their health. She spoke of the need to pay special attention to respect, employment, pension and social security for women laborers working at home and outside.
Shri. Yogesh Kumar, Additional Commissioner of MNREGA, Government of Uttar Pradesh spoke about the many important schemes for MNREGA labourers by the Government of Uttar Pradesh, in which one woman will be made available for creche services for 20-39 laborers. In the quarterly register, about 48 thousand women will get work for the provision of creche services, with annual income will be about twenty thousand four hundred rupees. There is a target of ensuring 5 lakh people will get benefit for personal work and in Mission 20, 100 families will be ensured work guarantee in each panchayat. By combining these schemes, they can also get the benefit of Ayushman Bharat insurance and at the same time they will get their social security.
Shri Shamim Akhtar, Deputy Labor Commissioner Social Security Board, Government of Uttar Pradesh gave information about the e-Shram portal launched by the Prime Minister on 26 August 2021. Registration of workers is free, and through registration, workers will be linked with 156 types of work can be done and the Uttar Pradesh government aims to ensure the registration of more than six crore workers by the end of this year, so that they and their families can be linked to social security and welfare schemes. Registered workers will get the benefit of Ayushman Bharat and accidental insurance.
Sandeep Chachra, Executive Director, Action Aid Association, said that the “Campaign for Social Security and Livelihood” is very important and necessary, the message of the campaign should be taken to the underprivileged communities. While promoting rights of informal workers especially women laborers we also need to pay attention to education, health and child labour. There is a need to work for social security with special consideration of land, housing, food and minimum wages. Khalid Chaudhary, Associate Director, ActionAid Association, launched the poster of this campaign pledged the mission to take this campaign 4 states and one union territory, and empower workers.